The Colombian Air Force (Fuerza AÃ©rea Colombiana, FAC) has received its first four Cessna 172S SKYHAWKs, which will serve with Primary Flight Squadron No 111 at the â€˜Marco Fidel SuÃ¡rez’ Military Aviation School for elementary training. The arrival of these aircraft allows the fleet of T-41D Cessna Mescalero aircraft to be replaced. They have served since 30 aircraft were inducted in 1968. The Colombian Navy and officers from other nations, including Honduras, Panama, El Salvador, Guatemala and the Dominican Republic have also befitted from the facility.
The Cessna 172 Skyhawk is an American four-seat, single-engine, high wing, fixed-wing aircraft made by the Cessna Aircraft Company. Measured by its longevity and popularity, the Cessna 172 is the most successful aircraft in history. Cessna delivered the first production model in 1956, and as of 2015, the company and its partners had built more than 44,000 units. The Cessna T-41 Mescalero is a military version of the popular Cessna 172F, operated by the United States Air Force and Army, as well as the armed forces of various other countries.
The Cessna 172S was introduced in 1998 and is powered by a Lycoming IO-360-L2A producing 180 horsepower (134 kW). The maximum engine rpm was increased from 2,400 rpm to 2,700 rpm resulting in a 20 hp (15 kW) increase over the “R” model. This model is marketed under the name Skyhawk SP, although the Type Certification data sheet specifies it is a 172S. The 172S is built primarily for the private owner-operator and is, in its later years, offered with the Garmin G1000 avionics package and leather seats as standard equipment. As of 2009, only the S model is in production.